N5.3bn Fraud: Court orders arrest of ex-Gov Chimaroke Nnamani

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By Temitope Stephen

A Federal High Court, Lagos, on Monday ordered the arrest of former Governor of Enugu State, Dr. Chimaroke Nnamani.

The court presided over by Justice (Professor) Chuka Obiozor, made the order, following nnamani’s failure to appear  in court today (Monday) as ordered by the court.

Bar and Bench Watch reports that Justice Obiozor had  last Thursday, ordered that the former governor should appear before him today to take his plea, on the alleged fraud.

But at the resumed hearing of the matter today, Nnamani’s lawyer, Abubakar Samusudeen, informed the court of the inability of his client to be in court.

He specifically told the court that Nnamani was yet to return from his medical treatment abroad.

Samusudeen urged the court for more days to enable his client return from abroad to stand trial.

However, counsel to the  Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Kelvin Uzozie, urged the court to discountenance Nnamani lawyer’s application, saying that court order iwa meant to be obeyed.

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Ruling on the application, Justice Obiozor, upheld the submission of the EFCC lawyer, and issued arrest warrant against Nnamani.

The matter has been adjourned till December 14, 2017

Justice Obiozor is the fourth judge to handle the case, which began in 2007.

The case has been handled by Justices Tijani Abubakar, Charles Archibong (retd.), and Mohammed Yunusa, who was suspended by the National Judicial Council over corruption allegations.

The trial has been stalled since July 5, 2015, when some of the defendants entered into a plea bargain and forfeited their assets before Justice Yunusa.